Press Documentation: Charlie and Friends – A homage to Franz Oehrlein

Special exhibition 22 October 2015 to 10 April 2016

Charlie mit seiner Schlagzeugbatterie wird von einer Drehorgel begleitet.
Charlie mit seiner Schlagzeugbatterie wird von einer Drehorgel begleitet.

A small special exhibition is showing works by the German constructor of automatons, Franz Oehrlein (1932-2013). Oehrlein enjoyed close links with the Seewen Museum of Music Automatons, which was why he donated it four automatons from his private collection. By way of expressing its gratitude and paying respect to the memory of this entrepreneurial constructor, the museum is organising a special exhibition, to include loans from other collections.

As an inveterate ─ and self-taught ─ experimenter, Oehrlein began by building fully functioning barrel organs. Working in his workshop in Mainz, he soon turned his attention to constructing animated figures ─ some of them life-size ─ using all kinds of techniques. These automatons move wonderfully naturally and are a testimony to their maker's attention to detail.

Automatons by Oehrlein may be seen in some of the largest collections in Europe, Japan and the USA and are a joy to behold.


Please note that pictures may only be used for reporting purposes and must be published with reference to the copyright “Museum of Music Automatons Seewen SO” and that we must be provided with a copy of any such publication.